George W. Bush and the Case of the Black Hands


If, like Kanye West, you’re inclined to believe that George W. Bush does not care for black people, a new video causing a stir online today is not going to change your mind. In it, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton are seen shaking some hands in Haiti. Which is nice. Then, after Bush shakes a hand, he actually wipes it on Clinton’s shirt. We’re not talking a pat on the back that could be construed as a wipe; it’s clearly a long, lingering, almost seductive wipe. The question now being raised is whether Bush has some sort of a problem shaking the hands of black people specifically. You may recall that when Barack Obama first met George W. Bush, as recounted in The Audacity of Hope, Bush squirted hand sanitizer after they shook. Now, after shaking another black hand, another quick cleansing.

Does this mean anything at all? Probably not. Maybe the Haitian guy just had sweaty, sticky, or otherwise gross hands. We’re sure that throughout all his years of campaigning, Bush has shaken many a black hand without incident. All race issues aside, though, who wipes their hand on another person’s shirt? You can see that, for a brief instant, Bush considers wiping his hand on his own shirt, then decides to use Clinton’s instead. There’s just no excuse for that.